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Spending dollars and city job counts up in 2014-15 budget

Adam Benjamin
Adam Benjamin
City budget a recovery budget.

The increase in property taxes collected in San Diego during the 2013-14 budget year gave the city council the money guarantee they needed to, Monday, June 9th, pass Mayor Kevin Faulconer's 1.202 billion dollar One San Diego budget. Increased city receipts will pay for the neighborhood work in the Mayor's budget and additions to city personnel.

Revenues went up 2.7 million dollars above the projected revenues this year. Spending went down below projected outlays. Adding up 1.6 million dollars lower than expected.

A 7.2 million dollar growth in property taxes before the Mayor's May budget revision put the most money in the city's general fund.

“There is something for every San Diegan and every neighborhood in this budget. This One San Diego budget is the first step toward creating the city we deserve as it makes a significant down payment on rebuilding all of our neighborhoods,” said Faulconer. We’re building more parks and fire stations, installing more streetlights and sidewalks, filling more potholes, hiring more police officers and firefighters, increasing library hours and doing it all in a fiscally-responsible way.”

Mayor Faulconer signed the One San Diego budget on his 100th day in office.

Contractor work on the convention center expansion project will not come cheap during the upcoming fiscal year. The city budgeted 1.5 million dollars to pay off payments to a project architect and a pre-construction contractor, and a contractor who will do geotechnical testing and a traffic study. The city added half a million dollars to the spent 1 million dollar total to pay the third contractor to work on utilities and road realignments.

Stabilized city revenues give the city departments opportunities to add personnel. For the May revision to the budget, the Mayor added 19.98 full time positions to the budgeted personnel. Clerical workers are needed in City Planning and the Envionmental and Resource Analysis Division. The city, after passing a new Living Wage Ordinance this year, needs workers to enforce the ordinance. It also plans ot add personnel to its staff handling the city's hiring system, NEOGOV.

Among this year's city councilmember recommendations to save money on city costs, a recommendatioin was made to expand the use of alternative work schedules in city departments. A 2010 work schedule change, at the Environmental Services Department's Collections Services, from 8 hours a day 5 days a week to a four 10 hour days a week flex time schedule, saved the city 4.5 million dollars, and is still in use. Several councilmembers recommended the expanded use of alternative work schedules.

This is a Center Line Policy Alert.